Superior Web Design DUMBO | ProStrategix

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DUMBO: Gentrification Under the Bridge 

Having been a New Yorker for the past 22 years, New York differs completely from when I moved to the city in the late 1990s. DUMBO is one neighborhood that has seen some dramatic changes. 

A fun or sad fact depending on where you sit regarding gentrification. This neighborhood’s nickname was originally created in the 1970s to deter development. This story may be more urban legend than fact. 

However, this much is true. As more and more neighborhoods in Manhattan gentrified and became more expensive, people expanded into DUMBO, with its easy access to the Financial District and other parts of Manhattan. DUMBO’s old abandoned industrial sites were quickly developed into luxury condos. The neighborhood quickly gentrified and is now one of the most expensive neighborhoods in Brooklyn. 

DUMBO is now one of the city’s major arts districts, with Klompching Gallery. There are many unique eateries from a chocolate factory to artisanal bakeries and cafes. 

DUMBO occupies an unique location geographically because it is both easily accessible from both Brooklyn and Manhattan. This allows businesses to draw both from businesses and residents.

Why Web Design Matters in DUMBO?

Great web design is important no matter where you are located. However, in densely populated areas like DUMBO, where mobile usage is high. These best practices are highly important especially

  1. A design that is as unique as you. You need to stand out from the crowd and a great UX can communicate that to your clientele.
  2. Mobile is important because customers are looking for solutions that are near to where they are. Leaving the neighborhood is not convenient.
  3. Superior mobile UX lets customers know you have exactly what they want or need.

Your CMS Can Have a Profound Effect on Page Speed

If you didn’t build your own site, you’re likely using a content management system (CMS) that your web builder chose. If he or she didn’t educate you on the pros and cons, you may be in for a big surprise in your webpages’ performance and search engine rankings.

What is a CMS

The technical definition for a content management system (CMS) is “is a computer software program used to manage the creation and modification of digital content.”

In other words, it is a system that allows the content to be stored separately from the code that builds the page. The user enters the code through a program called an interface, e.g. WordPress, and the interface saves that as the page data. The browser takes the files from both locations and renders the page.

However, while simple and easy, it creates a problem. To make this easier to understand, I use a simple metaphor of an architect, contractor, and warehouse. The user is the architect, the contractor is the browser, and all the design code sits in the warehouse

In this metaphor, we are going to use a prefabricated home. There are a general set of blueprints, but lots of options for flooring, tiles, etc.  Think of this as your theme.

The architect now selects specific options within a house, for example, flooring, tile, window type, etc.  But, these specifications aren’t given to the contractor (browser) until he or she shows up to build the house.

The contractor knows he or she is building a home, but other than that, it’s left open. Therefore, they have to bring all the labor and materials they might use, even if they aren’t needed in this specific build.


Once at the site, the contract reads the blueprints and then has to sort through and organize their materials first before the job can start.

As you can see there is a lot of wasted time and materials that put a burden on the contractor. This is why a theme will never be as fast as a custom build.

Why Local Digital Marketing Matters in DUMBO?

With so much choice packed into such a small area, the key to success in DUMBO is standing out and being noticed. Local digital marketing can help you do just that. 

  1. Local digital marketing in DUMBO is about differentiating and owning a small niche. Then, exploring how you might expand from it.
  2. Digital is important to raise awareness among both DUMBO residents and business people in FIDI. 
  3. it lets both DUMBO and FIDI neighborhoods know you are nearby, open, and accessible, especially in the spring and summer when a walk over the Brooklyn Bridge adds to the experience.

Custom Build is Likely Your Best Option for Speed

A custom built website is created by web designers. These designers create code only for the features you use to get the results you want. Therefore, there is no excess code. 

If your developer helps you set up your tracking codes and other third party integrations, then you can minimize any issues those create.

The beauty of a custom build is there is no trade-off between speed and quality. When you factor in the lost revenue from bounces and poor conversion that a slower site creates, the investment generally pays for itself.

How to Deal with a CMS

Without taking any action, your performance on mobile will likely fall in the 20s to 40s on Google Pagespeed Insights

Common Options

Plug-ins

WordPress is the dominant market player. Therefore, we will touch on some of the common plug-in for this CMS.

Most of the plug-ins, save W3 total cache, are simple. Most are not free if you want to get the maximum benefit. They do produce a measurable difference in speed, but do not expect to get above 50-60.

AMP

Accelerated Mobile Pages was introduced by Google in and around 2016. AMP is a stripped down version of HMTL which has fewer features, which makes it very fast. But, now you need to manage two sites versus one. Plus, you lose consistency between mobile and desktop

Theme Optimization

Since you are changing the theme itself, this requires a significant amount of coding knowledge to do it right. This usually requires hiring a developer.

A good developer can usually clean up the theme enough that you can reach custom speeds. The cost is generally equal to higher than a customer build depending on the work required.

Summary

If you want lightning fast speed, skip the CMS. We recommend a custom build.

  1. No excess code makes the page faster.
  2. You just have to manage one site. There is no need for a separate mobile site.
  3. The lost revenue due to mediocre performance on mobile will likely return more than the upfront investment in a clean, custom build.

ProStraegix is a web design agency with offices in New York City. We also provide SEO and pay per click advertising support to our clients.

Things to Remember…

If you're thinking about finding help in DUMBO for your small business, here are some things to keep in mind.

  1. Find a firm that knows your area. If your small business is marketing in DUMBO, you'll want help from someone who understands how DUMBO works. The best marketing firms understand what makes DUMBO so special and can communicate to your clientele.
  2. Find a company you can trust. If you can't trust a business to have your best interests, you're already going to be left in the lurch. Make sure you have a guarantee that your business will be treated fairly by all parties.
  3. Get the size of help you need. A larger firm can provide more resources and can do more things. A smaller firm, on the other hand, can feel like a neighbor in DUMBO, with the added benefit of one-on-one help from the best the company can offer.

How to Adapt Our Small Business SEO Tips for DUMBO

Aside from all the general tips above, here are some specific actions you can take based on the three key elements of local search algorithms:

Proximity 

All of this assumes that you have developed your keyword list. If you have not, this section will be more effective once you do. Please see our previous post on digital marketing in DUMBO and then come back.

Go through your keywords list and select those which are good descriptors of your business. If it were me, I would use something like “digital marketing agency”, “seo services”, for example. Then make a list of the neighborhoods you service, for example “seo services Jay Street”.

Now comes the harder part, that is frankly a bit tedious. For each combination, see if you can create a somewhat unique post that’s 500-1000 words for that keyword. For us, it is a post like this. I try to write a post that helps my potential clients learn something or do something they didn’t know they could. 

Prominence 

Now, this is the good part. If you do write quality posts for these keywords, you will be raising your prominence. Google knows that all these neighborhoods are near Dumbo. So, for each good post you write, you help raise your prominence on a given topic in a given location.

Prominence is also helped by the basic techniques I mentioned earlier, such as being a part of local business groups, e.g. the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce or Dumbo.is. Any local listing helps.

Relevance

This is why I like the blog technique because it hits all three key areas. If your keyword is a descriptor of what you do and the neighborhood is one you serve, it is highly likely that you will score points on relevance.

Finding the right SEO for your small business in a neighborhood like DUMBO can be a crucial way to get your company noticed online.

These same tools would apply if you want to target local SEO in Brooklyn or, more broadly, local SEO in NYC

See more about Small Business Marketing in DUMBO. If you are more interest in the borough, you can see our Small Business Marketing in Brooklyn. If you want the full city, you can see our Small Business Marketing in NYC.